Cañon City, Colo. – The Bureau of Land Management will hold a public hearing in Trinidad to receive comments on the draft New Elk Coal Lease Application Environmental Assessment (EA). The hearing will begin at 6:00 p.m. on Thursday, March 25, 2010 at the La Quinta Inn, Toupal Drive, Trinidad, Colorado 81082.
The BLM Royal Gorge Field Office has released a draft EA on a proposed coal lease by New Elk Coal Company, LLC located approximately 26 miles west of Trinidad, Colorado, to the north of Las Animas County Road 12 and north of the Purgatoire River. Drafts of the EA and Finding of No Significant Impact, Geologic Engineering and Maximum Economic Recovery documents will be available for public review at the hearing. They are also available on the Royal Gorge Field Office website at www.blm.gov/co/st/en/BLM_Information/nepa/rgfo.html (scroll to NEPA #DOI-BLM-CO-200- 2009-0018).
Written requests to testify orally at the public hearing should be received by the BLM Royal Gorge Field Office by 12:00 p.m., March 25, 2010. Those who indicate they wish to testify when they register at the hearing may have an opportunity if time is available.
In addition, the public is invited to submit written comments concerning the fair market value and maximum economic recovery of the coal resource. Public comments will be used in establishing fair market value for the coal resource in the described lands. Comments should address specific factors related to fair market value including, but not limited to:
1. The quality and quantity of the coal resource.
2. The price that the mined coal would bring in the market place.
3. The cost of producing the coal.
4. The interest rate at which anticipated income streams would be discounted.
5. Depreciation and other accounting factors.
6. The mining method or methods which would achieve maximum economic recovery of the coal.
7. Documented information on the terms and conditions of recent and similar coal land transactions in the lease area, and
8. Any comparable sales data of similar coal lands.
Written comments will be accepted through April 12, 2010. Written comments may be submitted by mail to BLM-RGFO, New Elk Coal Lease, 3028 E. Main St., Cañon City, CO 81212, or email to [email protected] (please type New Elk Coal Lease in the subject line), or fax to Melissa Smeins at 719-269-8599. For more information call Melissa Smeins at 719-269-8523.